NEW MEDITATIONS FOR A NEW YEAR January 2016 by Janis L. Silverman

Struggle (teen and adult)
Life is so unpredictable.
One day you are on top of the world.
The next day may seem like a disaster.
How can you feel balanced in the ups and downs of your life?
When you struggle physically, emotionally, financially,
it may seem endless and without resolution.
Dwelling in the struggle may cause suffering.
What if you try to see this struggle in a new way?
Taking a long view may allow you to put your struggles into perspective.
For example, an illness, a surgery or an accident
can turn your world upside down for a time.
What if you look at all of the positives in your life?
Meditate
Gently, slowly close your eyes.
Sit quietly and breathe in peace.
Picture the many blessings you have today.
Visualize family, friends, your home, a favorite chair,
the birds outside on your birdfeeder, the sunshine,
a smile or a hug you got this week and so much more.
Let memories take you to places and times of happiness and peace.
Continue to breathe rhythmically and visualize what brings you joy.
Let joy fill your heart and mind.
Continue to follow your breath.
Meditate for at least ten minutes.

Journal/Draw
Slowly come back to the present moment.
Does your burden seem any lighter?
Journal or draw about your blessings, joys and happy memories.
When you have finished, if you wish, share your drawing or writing.
Reflect
Your struggles are real and challenging.
When you visualize blessings and happiness,
you can put your difficulties in perspective.
This can help you maintain balance.
When you are struggling, try this meditation.
Take stock of what is good.

Copyright Janis L. Silverman. New Meditations for a New Year, January 2016

THOUGHTS IN THE NEW YEAR 2016 FOR CHILDREN by Janis L. Silverman

Winter Blahs (for children)
Sometimes winter seems so perfect.
When you see a blanket of fresh snow,
and dive right into it
Or build a snowman,
all is well.
Sometimes winter is dark and bitter cold.
Sometimes winter seems so long.
Some days it is too cold to be outside.
That is when you may get the blahs.
Your imagination can help you.
Find a comfortable chair.
Close your eyes.
Take a deep breath
Slowly let the breath out and sigh.
Say “Ahhhhh.”
Try that again two more times.
Picture all of the things you can do today.
Imagine what you can do right now.
If you want to be outside and it’s too cold,
try drawing a snow fort that you will build
when it’s a bit warmer.
Picture what you will do when you are able to get out and enjoy winter.
What else can you do while you are inside?
In your mind see what you can enjoy indoors.
Perhaps you can play a game or create one.
Continue to relax and breathe while you
picture favorite indoor fun.
Sit and “see” all of your possibilities.
Now it is time to slowly open your eyes.
Make a list or draw your indoor activities.
Post this on the refrigerator.
Choose one of your ideas and have a great time.
Chase away those winter blahs!

Copyright Janis L. Silverman Thoughts in the New Year for Children, January 2016